“For you bring some strange things to our ears. We wish to know therefore what these things mean.” – Acts 17:20
Jesus, please help us today to clearly speak what You desire to be shared. Empower us to consciously avoid our churchy clichés and our non-essential theological verbiage. Help us to remember that we live in a post-Christian America, and that so many people whom You are drawing near will believe when Your servants speak the vision and make it plain. Help us, whenever it is possible today, to listen to them and to remember that their words proceed from their hearts’ condition. Let us be soaked with grace so that we gladly meet people where they are instead of interacting with them from a posture of what we suppose they ought to be by now. Help us to anticipate that some with whom we interact today will be people who have been filled with corrosive error from our culture, deadly deceit from the spirit of this age and, sadly, suffocating religious rhetoric from churches who failed to tell them the truth. Help us not to assume that those in our midst comprehend even the most basic tenets of the faith which we hold so dearly. Grace us not to steamroll over the unbeliever with our Sunday bluster and bravado. So much of what we easily speak with oiled eloquence is little more than religious gibberish to them. What good are our words about You and Your Kingdom if it sounds so strange to them? Help us to know how much You love them, and how dull and ignorant we ourselves were when You sought us out with the Gospel. We need happy patience with people today.
And cause us to remember grace. And the cross. And Your atoning death, followed by Your unstoppable life. Dislodge these important things from the periphery of our thinking, and place them front and center. In this complicated generation, give us spiritual skill at untangling theological knots, so that those who will be saved may lace up the shoes of the gospel of peace, and thereafter stand firm. We look for You to rain down some of Your glorious goodness today, O King! We need an anointing from on high in order to be able to make Your majesty known and offer opportunity for the most ignorant and confused among us to experience radical encounter with You.
They must know that You are real. By faith, we get out of the way and welcome You to move through our commitments and into their hearts.
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